It is always pleasing when former clients return to us with an exciting new project, and we were therefore delighted to view Whitehouse Farmhouse, Nr Halesworth, for our clients.
This Grade II listed farmhouse, detached listed barn and extensive collection of nineteenth century agricultural buildings is in need of considerable repair and restoration. We have prepared a Heritage Appraisal for the entire site and have had positive meetings and pre-application response from the Local Authority regarding our repair and alteration proposal for the farmhouse. We are now focussing our attention on converting the detached sixteenth century thatched barn into living accommodation.
This will include the replacement of some unsympathetic mid twentieth century additions and the restoration of the main barn, while retaining the special character and charm which defines this beautiful structure.
Our on-going work for the Benacre Estate has to date included some interesting and challenging projects, and we are pleased to have been engaged, along with Savills as planning agents, to produce a feasibility scheme for the repair and reuse of the now redundant farm complex.
The extensive and varied collection of listed structures on the site vary from a vast seventeenth century barn, to eighteenth century thatched cattle sheds with beautifully preserved timber work, to mid nineteenth century red brick farm ranges.
The site and structures are extremely challenging, and we are currently producing a scheme that will respect the existing layout of the site, preserve the best of what exists, and provide a long term viable solution for the farm complex.
We have been commissioned to restore and refurbish this Grade II listed former rectory in Suffolk.
The core of the house is seventeenth century, with an early nineteenth century ‘gentrified’ brick re-fronting to the principal elevation. Located to the rear is a late nineteenth century drawing room addition of ambitious scale and bold material use. We are proposing to demolish an area of dilapidated lean-to additions situated to the rear corner of the house, and replace these with a two storey kitchen and bathroom wing. The provision of such rooms removes the need for the existing, historically interesting, and untouched spaces to be altered or subdivided. The rest of the house will be sensitively and gently opened up, repaired, modernised and restored.
Planning and Listed Building Consent have been granted, and work has recently commenced on site.
We have been approached to design a property to replace a derelict dwelling, on a site surrounded by woodland. Our reaction was to produce an L-shaped plan for a house of two distinct zones: living and sleeping. A glass elevation to the living accommodation would be distinct from the cantilevered, shuttered concrete elevation to the more private sleeping areas.
Positioned in a clearing to the centre of the wood, the hard concrete aesthetic will provide a pleasing contrast to the soft, organic character of the site.
We are currently working up our concept sketches into a full Planning Application.
Click on the video (left) to see full render of the proposal.
Concrete House 2017
Country house remodelling
The domestic accommodation of this Grade II listed house, situated in Frostenden, Suffolk, was altered during the 1950’s to form a full-size squash court and garage. The new owners required this wing to be rethought, recognising the limited benefit they would derive from a squash court.
Following completion of a heritage appraisal and discussions with the Conservation Officer, a scheme was prepared for remodelling the accommodation to provide an entrance hall, office, utility, cloakroom, pantry and kitchen. The first floor was re-ordered to form three new bedrooms, two bathrooms and a private seating area. This accommodation was arranged around, and accessed from, a central octagonal landing – a pleasing and a practical solution to accommodating several doorways off a narrow corridor.
This work was completed in May 2014.
Occasionally a client purchases a house that has been unloved for half a century, and while it requires considerable intervention to undo years of neglect, such properties possess an unspoilt and rather special patina. This is what we faced at Uggeshall in Suffolk.
The Grade II listed late sixteenth century farmhouse required a light intervening hand, and this, coupled with a reliance on good materials and simplicity of design revitalised the house and equipped it for modern living. Inappropriate subdivisions made during the late twentieth century were removed. The attic accommodation, little altered since the nineteenth century, remains unconverted – its character so gentle that all agreed it should not be spoilt. Elsewhere retained features were enhanced through the careful choice of new floor surfaces, quality fittings and paint colours.
Bespoke hardwood doors and windows replaced inappropriate 1970’s softwood units, whereas some appealingly utilitarian 1930’s metal framed windows were refurbished and retained.
The result was the subtle conservation of an important and characterful Suffolk farmhouse, garden and outbuildings.
Dining room addition
The development of a brief of work is an essential starting point for any project, and at Westhall in Suffolk we worked closely with the client to establish accommodation requirements and a sense of stylistic preference.
It became clear that the most appropriate way of achieving the required accommodation, without confusing the existing architecture, would be with an addition immediately identifiable as modern and of independent character.
The farmhouse dates from the fifteenth and seventeenth century, and is Grade II listed. A porch and flat roofed‘sun room’ added during the 1960’s were demolished and replaced with a link structure and an L-shaped brickwork wall which forms the backbone of the new dining room. The over-sailing flat roof is supported on oak brackets fixed to a structural oak frame – the latter deliberately making visual reference to the construction of the main house and a preserved mullioned window.
A fair-faced concrete plinth, polished concrete floors and expanses of glass mean that inside and out, the addition appears modern and is well linked with the surrounding gardens, moat and wider landscape.
We have recently been re-engaged to complete further alterations to the house.
Balintore Castle, situated in a tranquil glen in Angus, Scotland, is Grade A listed. It is a late and mature Scots Baronial design by the renowned country house architect William Burn.
By the mid twentieth century estate finances had dwindled, lavish shooting parties had ceased, and Balintore was abandoned.
Following a precedent-setting Compulsory Purchase Order (an eight year process in which this office played a primary role, supporting and advising the prospective purchaser) we surveyed the structure and prepared an application for Planning Permission and Listed Building Consent.
Conversion of the kitchen wing to form owner accommodation has commenced and work to the main building has included overhauling roofs, reinstatement of floors and the installation of new or refurbished sash windows.
The project is far from complete, although the steady pace of progress suits the client and is appropriate for the long drying out process and gentle awakening of the castle.
We were appointed by Framlingham College, Suffolk, to explore the potential restoration of a weather boarded cottage located adjacent to the college. Our initial research demonstrated that the building, previously thought to date from the mid nineteenth century, is actually a rather unusual late eighteenth century structure.
Working with The Morton Partnership (structural engineers) we completed a survey to establish the condition of the timber frame, produced sketch proposals for restoration and re-use of the accommodation and entered into discussions with the local authority Conservation and Planning officers.
Revesby Abbey in Lincolnshire, is a Grade I listed country house designed by the Scottish architect William Burn.
Built in 1844 and abandoned during the 1960's, the house has regularly featured on the English Heritage ‘Buildings At Risk Register’. Revesby was purchased at auction by a couple who are restoring the house, gardens and stable block as their family home.
We were engaged to liaise with the local authority and English Heritage, and to prepare the necessary drawings and details to obtain consent for emergency repairs and conversion of the stable block to form living accommodation.
Once consent was granted, the owner (a master craftsman) repaired roofs and reinstated floors and staircases within the main house. The stable block and brewhouse have been sensitively re-roofed and the gardens have been cleared to reveal the original layout and landscaping features.
We have completed a number of ‘Arts and Crafts’ inspired bookcases, with each unit being designed to compliment specific locations and existing furniture.
For one client a wardrobe, constructed from oak, incorporated elements of seventeenth century panelling. The quality of detail expressed on the outside of the item was continued internally, and the unit was fitted out with brass hanging rails and a series of oak drawers (the latter incorporating ‘cut outs’ to the face of the drawers to suit the profile of the client’s hand).
A curious feature of an arts and crafts villa was an unfinished fireplace within a small sitting area. Existing features such as corbels and tile details had to be carefully surveyed, and these formed the starting point for our design.
We produced a bold cornice, that advances and recedes to suit the existing architecture and provide a central focus for the room.
As an office we enjoy preparing perspective portraits and sketches of existing and proposed buildings, either as visual aids to be used as part of a Planning and Listed Building Consent application, or simply as a portrait of a valued home.